TA/CA

MASc Seminar vs MASc Defense

Degree Completion


General

How many courses can part-time and full-time students take each term?

Part-time students normally permitted to take one 0.5 weight course per term. Full-time students are normally permitted to take up to three 0.5 weight courses per term.

I’m a new MASc or PhD student. How do I receive my office assignment?

In the first week of term, the Administrative Coordinator will email you to come pick up a Welcome Package from their office. This Welcome Package contains information on the mandatory safety training that must be completed before your office can be assigned. Once your safety training is complete, you are able to submit a space request form to the Department Assistant for office assignment.

Offices are only assigned to full-time students and cannot be assigned until all mandatory safety training is complete.

Do MEng students get offices?

Only full-time MASc and PhD students receive offices. There is a Graduate Student Lab in E3-1101 available only to course-work graduate students that is owned and operated by the Faculty of Engineering. If you are a MEng student that wishes to use the lab, please email the Administrative Coordinator for the access code.

Can I take courses outside of the Faculty of Engineering?

If you wish to take a course outside of the Faculty of Engineering for credit, you must submit the Course Approval Form to the Administrative Coordinator, Graduate Studies prior to enrolment. A course syllabus and detailed marking scheme must be attached with the course approval form. The course approval form does not need to be submitted for courses being audited or taken as extra to your degree.


TA/CA

What steps do I have to take to become a TA/CA?

To be eligible for a teaching or course assistantship, graduate students must:

It is important to note that eligible graduate students are not guaranteed to be assigned an assistantship in any term.  Using a number of factors, assistantships are assigned by the Undergraduate Associate Chair to provide proven high-quality teaching support to the undergraduate students.  This means that some graduate students may receive fewer or more positions than others over the course of their graduate studies. 

I want to enroll in the ExpecTAtions workshop. When is the next offering?

ExpecTAtions workshops are run twice a year by the Engineering Graduate Studies Office. When a new offering is announced the Administrative Coordinator will send an email to the MASc and PhD students informing them of the dates, times, and how to register.

I’ve completed the mandatory training to become a TA. How do I apply?

Each term the Associate Chair, Undergraduate Studies will send out an email with a link to apply to available TA/CA positions.


MASc Seminar vs MASc Defense

How do I know if I am doing the MASc Seminar or the MASc Defense?

Those who were admitted prior to Spring 2017 do the MASc seminar. Those who were admitted Spring 2017 and onwards do the MASc defense.

What is the difference between the MASc seminar and the MASc defense?

 

MASc Seminar (old)

MASc Defense (new)

Timing

Mutually agreed upon time between the student and supervisor; normally takes place before or during the display period the thesis

Mutually agreed upon time between the student and committee members; normally takes place at the end of the display period of the thesis

How to schedule

Student emails Administrative Coordinator, Graduate Studies with date/time of seminar and title of thesis

Student submits MASc Defense form concurrently with the MASc Thesis Submission form to Administrative Coordinator, Graduate Studies

Attendance

Supervisor(s) only

Supervisor(s) and committee members

Presentation length

20 minutes + QA period from supervisor(s)

20 minutes + QA period from committee

Decision

Pass/Fail basis

Committee members deliberate and assign a ranking on a four-point scale (1. Accepted, 2. Accepted conditionally, 3. Decision deferred, 4. Rejected) and immediately notify the student of the outcome

What is the difference between thesis readers and defense examiners?

The MASc thesis readers and MASc defense examiners are the same people, but different language is often used used depending on the form being submitted.

Please see the comparison chart below for more information.

 

MASc Thesis Submission Form

MASc Defense Form

Supervisor(s)

At least one tenured or tenure track faculty member of the student's home department who will normally be the student's supervisor(s)

Supervisor (chair of the examination committee if the first examiner is not present)

Faculty member chosen by the supervisor

At least one additional examiner whose expertise can support the evaluation of the Master's thesis

Note: may also be referred to as the “second reader”

First examiner: chair of examination committee, faculty member from the department in the research area of the thesis

Faculty member chosen by the department

An additional tenured or tenure track faculty member from the University of Waterloo

Note: may also be referred to as the “third reader”

Second examiner: faculty member outside the primary research area of the thesis

When does the MASc seminar take place?

The MASc seminar takes place at a mutually agreed upon time between the student and supervisor that normally falls before or during the display period of the thesis.

Is there any paperwork for the MASc seminar?

There is no formal paperwork for the MASc seminar. To book your seminar, please email the Administrative Coordinator the date, time, and title of your MASc seminar.

When does the MASc defense take place?

The MASc defense takes place at a mutually agreed upon time between the student and supervisor that normally falls at the end of the display period of the thesis.

The MASc defense takes place at the end of the display period so that the MASc committee has had time to read and review the thesis. Pending a category 1 response at the MASc defense, the MASc committee can sign the Department Approval of MASc Defense form immediately following the defense. It is the responsibility of the student to obtain signatures from any committee member not at the defense.

Is there any paperwork for the MASc Defense?

Yes, the MASc defense is booked when you submit the MASc Defense form. This form is submitted concurrently with the MASc Thesis Submission form at least 3 weeks in advance of your proposed MASc Defense date.


Degree Completion

Is there a place where the steps to becoming degree complete are outlined?

For research-based programs, see the Steps to Degree Completion for PhD and Steps to Degree Completion for MASc on the Faculty of Engineering website.

For course based programs, review your degree requirements to ensure all courses and milestones have been completed. At least one month before the end of your final term you will need to apply for graduation through Quest.

What steps do I need to complete to make sure I am degree complete by Spring Convocation/Fall Convocation/100% tuition refund/50% tuition refund?

Please see the Degree Completion Deadlines webpage. This is updated each term by the Engineering Graduate Studies Office.

The Degree Completion Deadlines and Steps to Degree Completion webpages don’t give dates for the MAsc Seminar and MASc Defense. Why?

The MASc Seminar and MASc Defenses are department level requirements which is why they are not outlined on the Faculty of Engineering website. The MASc Seminar or MASc Defense should be completed by the time you are submitting your Department Approval of MASc Thesis form to the Administrative Coordinator.

How do I submit a MASc thesis?

Please see the "How to submit and upload a MASc thesis" webpage.

How do I schedule and submit a PhD defense?

Please see the "How to schedule and submit a PhD defense" webpage.


Have a question not listed on this webpage? Email the Adminstrative Coordinator, Graduate Studies at civegrad@uwaterloo.ca for more information.